Councillor tries to undo his resignation but council says no

A strange turn of events in Wigan:

Chaos reigned yesterday after Wigan Council insisted an independent councillor could not reverse his decision to quit the chamber.

Coun Steve Jones, independent representative for Bryn ward, performed a dramatic U-turn when he posted on Facebook that he was staying on. This came just a few days after he announced he was stepping down on February 20 for personal reasons.

However, the town hall has now insisted that he actually resigned on the day he said he would step down and a notice of casual vacancy for a new councillor has already been published…

Coun Jones [had told the council]: “With a lot of thought I have to inform you that as of the 20th of February 2018 I will be resigning my role as an elected councillor for Wigan Council.”

The law says that a resignation takes effect when received, but is a resignation that is described as being for a date in the future really a resignation before that date? I think the lawyers will have some fun with this one.

In the meantime, he has since turned up to a council meeting and insisted on taking his seat as a councillor. Only when the meeting was adjourned did he agree to move to the public gallery.

Councillor Jones’s vacillation over whether or not to resign may be connected with the run of controversies he has recently been in, with a caution for assault, a drink driving conviction, a series of aggressive social media postings about the council’s Chief Executive and a warning that he would not be able to vote on the council’s budget as he was behind with his council tax payments.

 

Keep up with news about elections by email

If you’d like to be notified by email when new posts about how are how our elections are run appear on this blog, just sign up here. (Note: if you’re already signed up for a daily email alert with all my new blog posts, then there’s no need to sign up for these alerts too as the stories will also be in the full daily digest.)

Interested in more stories about how our elections are run? Follow my dedicated election law channels on Facebook or Twitter which include bonus extra stories that don’t appear on this blog.

Published & Promoted by N Salvesen on behalf of Fiona Hall (Liberal Democrats), both at Low Leazes, Leazes Lane, Hexham, NE46 3BA. Hosted by FastHosts.

Hexham Liberal Democrats is powered by WordPress using the Lib Dem Aqua theme.